What Should I Do After A Car Accident?
Texas had 476,875 car accidents in 2014. When we look at the numbers, it becomes pretty obvious that there’s a high chance you could find yourself asking “What do I do after a car accident?” This article should help you feel a little more prepared if you become involved in a car accident, motorcycle accident, or truck accident in Texas.
Even if you don’t get injured in a car accident, there’s a pretty good chance that your body will be pumping with adrenaline. The adrenaline will cause you to think and act differently than your normally would. Take a deep breath and try to regain your composure.
Do Not Leave the Scene of the Accident
Some drivers panic after an accident. The fear of having the blame placed on them, lack of current auto insurance or a valid drivers license, or seeing other people injured makes some people want to flee the scene of the car accident. Don’t leave.
Leaving an accident scene will potentially open the door to you being charged with a felony. Even if you’re at fault, things will only get worse if you leave an accident scene.
Check Yourself, Passengers and Other Drivers for Injuries
Unless you’re a doctor, it’s very unlikely that you will conduct medical examinations at the scene of the car accident. But you should at least ask the people involved if they are ok or whether they need medical assistance.
Call 9-1-1 immediately if anyone is hurt. Try to keep injured people calm until medical help arrives at the accident scene.
Don’t Be Afraid to Go to the Emergency Room
Some people are hesitant to go to an emergency room after a car accident because they don’t have health insurance and they’re afraid of the costs associated with an ambulance ride or emergency room bill.
Some car accident injuries can be life threatening or cause paralysis. Don’t risk your life or well-being if you have spinal or other serious injuries. Keep in mind that the other driver’s insurance should cover your hospital bill.
But even if the other driver is uninsured or if you’re at fault, it’s still not worth risking your life or permanently damaging your health.
Call the Police
Car accident reports can provide you with all of the other driver’s essential information and will include a police officer’s narrative, which will help determine who was at fault.
Police reports are considered business records, so you will be able to use the car accident report if your case progresses to a jury trial.
Police officers will also arrange towing services if your car is not drivable.
Exchange Information With the Other Drivers
You will want to gather the name, phone number, address, drivers license number, auto insurance policy information, license place number of all drivers involved. Use your smart phone to take pictures of the insurance card and other information if you cannot find a pen and paper.
Be sure to be polite when exchanging information. It’s very possible that the other driver might be agitated, in pain, or even believe that you’re at fault. Being angry or hostile will not help.
Gather Information From Independent Witnesses
An independent witness will have a strong influence on any case. Witnesses don’t really have anything to gain by offering exaggerated facts or lying about the car accident, so they tend to be viewed as reliable sources of information.
If there are independent witnesses, be sure to get their name, phone number, address, and email address. Ask the witnesses what they witnessed and write simple notes to later. Again, you can also use your smart phone to video what the witness if that is easier.
Take pictures of where the cars are, the scene in general, and the damage to both cars. It’s not unusual for one car to have significant damage and the other car to have only moderate damage. Having pictures of both cars will help tell the entire story of how the car accident happened.
Do Not Post About Your Accident on Social Media
Many people like to share EVERYTHNG on social media. It may feel tempted to upload a picture of your car or truck accident to let friends and family members know that you have been injured.
Don’t do it!
More and more insurance defense attorneys are requesting complete Facebook files when car accident cases are in litigation. Simply deleting the files at a later date will not fix this problem.
If you have posted information about your case then they will find it. If you have been injured, you should be mindful of all other social media posts you share while you receive therapy and medical treatment. It’s very easy for information to be misunderstood and used against you.
Call the Insurance Company and Set Up a Claim
Call the other driver’s insurance company to set up a property damage and bodily injury claim. You can provide the insurance adjuster with basic information, but we do not recommend giving a recorded statement.
Recorded statements have the potential to hurt your case down the road. Again, be polite, and just set up the claim. If the other driver is uninsured you can set up the claim with your own insurance if you have full coverage.
Get Medical Treatment.
It is very common for people to feel fine when the adrenaline is pumping through their bodies right after a car accident. Unfortunately, many people begin to feel significant aches and pains the next day or even a few days later.
Injuries don’t usually fix themselves, so seek out medical attention if you are injured. Contact Allbee Law Firm if you need help finding a doctor who will not charge a co-payment each visit and will delay billing your medical expenses until your case settles or goes to trial.
Call Allbee Law Firm
If you have a personal injury case then we recommend hiring a personal injury lawyer. That might sound redundant, but I’ve seen many instances where injured people have hired lawyers who have never even handled personal injury cases.
Allbee Law Firm focuses on helping inured people.
We have handled thousands of cases that have given us the knowledge and experience to strategically guide you through the entire process. Call (817) BIG-MIKE now for a free consultation 24/7.
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